Healthcare Industry News:  NeoRx 

Biopharmaceuticals Personnel

 News Release - August 3, 2007

Semafore Pharmaceuticals Names Veteran Life Sciences Executive Edward L. Jacobs as Chief Executive Officer

INDIANAPOLIS, Aug. 3 (HSMN NewsFeed) -- Semafore Pharmaceuticals, Inc., an emerging leader in the development of novel cancer therapeutics addressing the PI3 Kinase (PI3K) and PTEN cell signaling pathways, today announced the appointment of Edward L. Jacobs as president and chief executive officer. Semafore interim CEO John Sima will resume his position as chief operating officer and chief financial officer and Dr. Joseph Garlich continues as Semafore's chief scientific officer.

Mr. Jacobs joins Semafore from cancer drug developer SuperGen, Inc., where he advanced from head of sales and operations to chief business and financial officer and then to chief operating officer, the second ranking executive position in the company. Mr. Jacobs played a major role in helping to manage SuperGen's growth, directing all business and commercial operations including licensing, drug development and sales and marketing. During his tenure as CFO, he oversaw financial operations for the publicly traded company, including managing financings and working with the investment community.

"Ed Jacobs' appointment as CEO marks an important turning point for Semafore," said Ronald D. Henriksen, chairman of the board of directors of Semafore. "Ed has a broad and diverse record of achievement in our industry, ranging from building entrepreneurial start-ups to managing global businesses. His expertise in cancer drug development, partnering and marketing is particularly timely now that our lead novel PI3K inhibitor SF1126 is advancing through clinical development. We are delighted he has joined Semafore and look forward to working with him to take the company to the next stage."

Prior to SuperGen, Mr. Jacobs was president and CEO of medical device company ETEX Corporation, which he successfully restructured and sold to Medtronic Corporation. Previously, he was senior vice president of commercial operations at drug delivery firm Sequus, directing global sales and marketing efforts for its novel marketed cancer drugs and helping to position the company for a successful sale to Alza Corporation, now part of Johnson & Johnson. Before Sequus, Mr. Jacobs was founder and chief executive officer of cancer vaccine innovator Trilex, where he secured funding, developed core infrastructure, initiated Phase III trials, negotiated a key pharmaceutical partnership and merged the company with Titan Pharmaceuticals, all in just two years' time.

"The central role of the PI3 Kinase and PTEN pathway has long interested cancer researchers as a potentially important new target for cancer drugs, and Semafore's clinical stage PI3K inhibitor SF1126 is among the most advanced and most promising," noted Mr. Jacobs. "I have spent most of my career building successful companies engaged in the battle against cancer, and I am eager to work with Semafore's founding executives and its impressive team of advisors to advance the company's innovative and potentially important programs."

Prior to founding Trilex, Mr. Jacobs served as vice president and general manager of Oncology Services at Syncor International, now Cardinel Health, and he was vice president for marketing and commercial development at cancer drug developer NeoRx. Earlier in his career Mr. Jacobs held sales and marketing positions of increasing responsibility at Adria Labs, now Pfizer Oncology, and Johnson & Johnson. He received a bachelor's degree from California State University at Northridge and a School of Management Certificate from the University of California at Los Angeles.

"This is an exciting time now that our lead PI3 Kinase inhibitor SF1126 is being assessed in its first clinical trial, and we are very pleased to have recruited an individual with such a strong and relevant track record to lead Semafore," said Mr. Sima. "Ed's business acumen and knowledge of the cancer field should prove invaluable as we work together to realize the scientific and business potential of our promising technology."

About Semafore Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

Semafore Pharmaceuticals, Inc. is a clinical stage drug discovery and development company focused on small molecule modulators of the PI3 Kinase and PTEN cell signaling pathway, a promising target pathway for multiple disorders, including the company's focus -- cancer. Semafore is one of the first biopharmaceutical companies to focus on both PI3K and PTEN and has successfully discovered and is developing a portfolio of drug candidates addressing these targets. For more information see the company's website at

Source: Semafore Pharmaceuticals

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